Murkowski celebrates 4th on southern peninsula

With a short break from her duties in Washington, D.C., Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski is spending two days with residents of the southern Kenai Peninsula in both Homer and Seldovia.

“Sen. Murkowski makes a point of spending July 4th in different communities around the state and this year she received a very lovely invitation to be the ‘Old Crab 2013.’ That was the catalyst,’” said Andrea Gusty, Murkowski’s Alaska communications director in Anchorage. 0“She also makes it a point to visit with the Homer Chamber of Commerce every year and this year it worked out she could accomplish all of that within the span of two days.”

On July 3, Murkowski will be the speaker at the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center monthly luncheon meeting.

“They called and said the senator had consented to take part in the festivities in Seldovia and were we interested in having her speak at a chamber luncheon,” said Monte Davis, the chamber executive director. “I said yes, we’d love that idea.”

The chamber’s July 3 meeting will be held at the Best Western Bidarka Inn from 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m. It is open to the public and lunch is optional; members are $14 and non-members $16. The chamber is requesting anyone interested in attending to call 235-7740 or email

Murkowski will spend the earlier part of Independence Day across Kachemak Bay in Seldovia. At 10:15 a.m., she will attend the groundbreaking of a value-added fish processing facility. Also attending will be Sen. Peter Micciche, R-Soldotna, Rep. Paul Seaton, R-Homer, and John Torgerson, executive director of the Kenai Peninsula Economic Development District.

Following the groundbreaking, Murkowski will participate in Seldovia’s Fourth of July parade as the “Old Crab.” Being the “Old Crab” is an honor shared by noteworthy Alaskans that include Gov. Jay Hammond, Sen. Ted Stevens and Halibut Cove resident and former Senate President Clem Tillion.

Later in the day, Murkowski will return to Homer where she will be the grand marshal in the July Fourth parade organized by the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center, driven by Doug Meeker in his white Mustang convertible. From there, Murkowski will head directly to the airport.

“I said we could get a car, drive her on the parade route and then right to the airport,” said Davis. “That’s literally what we’re doing. Doug Meeker is going to take her right to the airport.”

Due to arrive in Alaska Friday and return to D.C. July 8, Murkowski will make the most of her in-state time to connect with constituents.

“She’ll also be in Western Alaska and really be all over the state,” said Gusty. “When she comes home, she really travels.” 

McKibben Jackinsky can be reached at mckibben.